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Cases & Deals

December 20, 2023

Pro Bono Eviction Defense Victory

Ariana Fuller, Nick Kump, Jessica Xu obtained a unanimous jury verdict on behalf of a tenant in Los Angeles, preventing him from being evicted from his long-time home right before the holidays. The client, referred to us by K&S pro bono partner Bet Tzedek, has lived in a rent-controlled apartment in West Hollywood, California since 2004. In 2022, the client’s landlord filed an eviction case against him claiming that he breached his lease by (1) painting the inside of his balcony, (2) installing a window air-conditioning unit without permission, and (3) not allowing his landlord to come into the apartment to remove the air-conditioning unit. In addition to being pretextual, the eviction was also in retaliation for the client’s complaint to the West Hollywood rent control board that the landlord was not making sufficient repairs to his unit and the building. Ariana tried this case in front of a jury on December 19 and 20, 2023, arguing that the client’s conduct was not a material breach of his lease, and that the landlord was harassing and retaliating against our client. The jury deliberated for just 13 minutes before returning a unanimous verdict in favor of the client.